Brands and celebrity endorsements are a tale as old as time and social media influencer are on the rise. There is nothing wrong with getting your product or service endorsed by someone who has a lot of fans, ready to follow suit. However, this endorsement strategy is becoming a little old now. In the past, a glamorous celeb would appear on TV and urge you to buy that product. People would hit the stores and buy the product due to the influence of the celebrity figure in that target market.
Fast forward to 2018, and we have new celebrities now. It is the age of the ‘Social Media Influencers’. Ever faced a situation where your mother asked you to “put the phone down!” but you really wanted to see what Zaid Ali T posted on his YouTube channel today?
If you are like the rest of us, you must be glued to your phone, scrolling through the timeline of a social network or browsing the internet, following our favorite social media faces. No, they were not famous before. They worked their way up to become a thought leader in the Pakistani industry.
Sadly, we don’t see a variety of influencers who cover different fields of life. I follow 8 people, 7 of whom are fashion bloggers (the one remaining is a beauty blogger). It is time for enthusiasts to bless the internet with their passion projects and bring diversity to our local social media scenario. 30 per cent people prefer following the endorsement of a non-celebrity blogger when making purchase decisions.
Globally, Social media influencers have started taking over these platforms and disrupted the celebrity world with their influence on common masses.
Here is how you can become a Pakistani influencer and become a part of this exciting era of change:
Choose a Social network
You will instantly think: “Instagram!”, but that’s not it. Too many Pakistani influencers have been relying on Instagram to power their fame. It’s not an idea you should immediately brush away but start with an analysis of your niche to understand which social medium is going to be the best for you.
Moreover, it is hard to get followers on Instagram and other mature social networks. Refrain from the sinful act of buying followers to look more trustworthy. Pakistani internet audience is an untapped segment which can pay back very well when approached in the right way.
Try a new social medium to showcase your skills. Try musical.ly for instance, it is very popular between teens and college students. Look for a social network that matches your field. Fashion bloggers are all the rage because Instagram is a very relevant medium for them to show off their wardrobe in the most aesthetically pleasing way.
If you want to become a travel blogger, make YouTube your home for short travel videos. If you want to become a tech blogger, you can choose between Facebook, Twitter or YouTube. In short, choose a primary social network that takes traffic back to other entities like your blog or website.
Create a Content calendar
Having amazing content is not enough. There is a lot of content out there which does not get the visibility it deserves. If you have figured out your niche and made a persona online, that is only the first step. You have to chart out a content calendar and keep posting!
Don’t feel threatened by mega influencers who are getting all the deals today. If you stay frequent and punctual with content posting, you will start building an organic fan following. Most of the famous YouTubers and content creators will give you this advice: just keep posting and let the internet take care of the rest.
If you are worried about content ideas, you can search the web for many ideas that are relevant in your niche. Pakistani influencers who want to start out on a path less traveled, you will find it so easy to grab an idea and customize it within the Pakistani frame of reference.
if you want to become a food blogger and influencer, the most we see in Pakistani media is a cooking show. A quick search on Google about ‘content ideas for food bloggers’ took us to a site that has this list of suggestions.
- Feature a new product/menu item.
- Recipes, recipes, recipes.
- Serving suggestions.
- Pictures of your product in fun places.
- Calendar of upcoming events.
- Profile an employee.
- Profile another product or business you like or work with (especially your retailers).
- Recently returned from a trade show? What were your top 10 takeaways?
- See a food trend coming up? Give us your take.
- Partner with a charity. Write a post about them every quarter.
- What are the laws that govern the food industry and affect your business or the way your customers’ shop? Talk about it.
- Drinks that pair well with one of your products or dishes (or vice versa).
- Interview a chef you admire.
- Review a relevant book or movie or tv show.
- Jokes, quotes, cartoons, Youtube videos – not all blog posts need to belong.
- Have a social media post that got a lot of action? Embed it into a blog post and continue the conversation on your site.
Following these ideas, look around your neighborhood and gather inspiration for Pakistani food scene. Doesn’t matter which city you belong to, you will have a unique Pakistani angle to the content.
Pro tip: as a beginner and even late in your career, you can always churn out old content to grace people’s timelines. A content calendar will help you identify trends, news and events that are matching with your archived posts.
Network in the industry
Networking is an integral part of your social media career. You can’t have an offline impact if you don’t network with the right people. Make real connections that help you cement your place in the digital landscape.
Even if you have a million followers, you can’t interact with everyone personally on the internet. The place where you can interact is events, conferences or even at a mall! 67 percent of marketers believe that event marketing is a powerful strategy. Make sure you have RSVPed to all relevant events and show up to meet people and add contacts.
For example, for a fashion blogger, a Pakistan Fashion Week pass would be great. Tech bloggers can head to a tech meetup/product launch and food bloggers can be seen around the launch of a new eatery (PF Chang’s opening up soon!). Use those offline connections and add credibility to your personal brand.
Being a social media influencer does not mean that you will cruise away from the critics. Celebrity figures of any sort are under constant criticism from around the web, and in person. Even the President of Pakistan can’t avoid criticism!
When you get pointy fingers at your content, deal with it like a professional. Here’s a diagram of how people can deal with constructive criticism. When you become a positive person and respectably engage with critics, your influence will get another boost online. Remain approachable for new opportunities and stay humble. If you have more tips or questions, ask away in the comments section. Let’s begin!